Commissioner's newsletter

March 2019

Well I can't quite believe it's that time of the month again - time is absolutely flying by at the moment!

March has seen lots of exciting projects for the OPCC - the launch of a road safety campaign, raising awareness of child sexual exploitation and celebrating our disabled communities.

I'm sure many of you have received your council tax bills or will be over the next couple of weeks. In it you will see how we spent your money last year and our plans for the year ahead.

Most of us in Devon and Cornwall will see an increase of 41p per week in the policing part of your bill (for a band C property) after my budget plans were approved at last months Police and Crime Panel.

The additional revenue is being spent on frontline officers including a neighbourhood officer for each of the 27 sectors in the force area, 30 more detectives and an increase in the number of officers in response teams.

If you'd like to know more about the budget plans and where your money will be spent please visit the OPCC website.

Alison Hernandez

Campaign seeks to make drivers think before risking lives

A haulier, police problem solvers and the OPCC have teamed up to launch a campaign to reduce the number of people killed and seriously injured on the roads.

The campaign will see impactful safety messages created by the Honest Truth charity displayed across six Evans Transport lorries this summer. They warn about the dangers of drink and drug driving, speeding, driving when tired, failing to use seat belts and using mobile phones while driving.

The project has been co-ordinated and part funded by the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner for Devon and Cornwall, with family-owned haulier Evans Transport, which has depots across Devon, supplying the space on vehicle backs for no charge.

The Honest Truth is a Devon-based and award winning national charity which works with driving instructors to deliver vital safety messages to new drivers. It uses animals to portray behaviours which can be dangerous behind the wheel, such as a cat for a warning about driving while tired.

The campaign was the brainchild of Safer North Devon, a collaboration of police and partners which seeks to reduce the impact of crime on communities.

Evans’ vehicles bearing the messages will be regularly seen on the A361 North Devon Link Road, where a number of high profile crashes in recent years have had tragic consequences for several families.

More information is available on our website.

Latest News

PCC concerned about increase in young drivers using mobile phones

Devon and Cornwall Police and Crime Commissioner Alison Hernandez has had an Honest Truth safety message about distraction driving placed on her office van.

The RAC study released today (Thursday, March 20) reports that nearly half of 25 to 34 year olds say they make or receive calls while driving and the effect of penalties introduced in 2017 had a ‘fading impact’.

Distraction caused by mobile phone use has been linked to a number of serious accidents in the two counties in recent years.

A recent campaign supported by the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner aims to tackle distraction driving as one of the key causes of collisions after a poll of Devon and Cornwall residents showed it was their number one road safety concern.

The RAC Report on Motoring showed that a quarter of drivers (25%) – the equivalent of £10m people – admitted to illegally making or receiving calls while driving compared to 24% in 2017.

“I am saddened, but unfortunately not surprised, to hear that the effects of increasing penalties for being caught using a mobile phone appear to be waning,” Alison said.

“I think nationally we need to do more to educate young people about the dangers of distraction driving. It puts them, their passengers and others at huge risk. I am delighted that Evans has come on board to help us make our roads safer and I would love to work in partnership with other companies who would like to do their bit.”

Find out more >

Celebrating our disabled communities

People from disabled communities across Devon were honoured at a special awards ceremony in Exeter Friday 22 March.

The BASH awards recognises the achievements people from disabled communities in line with being active, being safe and being healthy – which is where the name BASH derives.

The BASH awards is organised jointly by Devon and Cornwall Police, the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner, Devon Link Up and ROC Active - two of the county’s key charities involved in supporting those with learning disabilities.

Read more >

Why drugs crackdowns will always have my support

Read Alison's blog about the good work being done to tackle exploitation and drug dealing in our counties.

See more >

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